Friday, January 8, 2016

Catching Up

This Christmas I decided to wrap the kids' gifts in a paper assigned to them without any gift tags, so they were guessing till Christmas morning which gifts were theirs. Then Christmas Day they opened an envelope with a small piece of their wrapping paper. They were guessing till the end. Adding another element of suspense to gifts was super fun.

The school parties are always Crazytown. Nativigating the parking lot alone earns this mama a celebratory Starbucks.
I still remember my mom dressing up and coming to my 1st grade Halloween party. So although those days are exhausting, I know being there matters.

Brody was sooooo excited for his Christmas program. This sweet boy just takes in every bit of joy life has to offer.

Frisbee...still as magical as ever.

We always take the kids shopping individually to buy gifts for one another. They love it. I mean LOVE it. They are very thoughtful in their selections for one another & are simply giddy about sneaking their gifts in the house & wrapping them.

I read on a blog once that one thing that always stuck in this blogger's mind was how at Christmas time her grandma always asked her what she wanted to gift that Christmas...not what she wanted to get for Christmas. I love that and want to create that kind of thinking in our house.

I fell in love with buffalo check this season and want to make us all new stockings for next Christmas. It's just so classic & rustic & cozy!

Love that these guys get so excited for Frisbee to bring their tickets & ride the "polar express" around looking at lights every year! Eek!

Conductor Andy punched words on all our tickets...AJ's said faith...Abby's said love...Brody's said son...mine said MILF. Nice.

The kids decorated cookies at Great Aunt Lou's house.

We had lots of relaxing afternoons of puzzles and snacks...just chilling over winter break...

This boy trying to guess tractor. Hilarious.

12 years in Colorado and I finally had a cake success. 3 days in the making, & we had a white chocolate frosted cranberry cake for dessert at Christmas dinner. That thing weighed like ten pounds.

Playing Settlers with this kid makes my heart happy. Except when he won't trade his brick with me.

We up'd our game by the end of winter break and taught him Cities & Knights. He picked it up really fast and played like a pro. A natural gamer that one.

This kid had an amazing Christmas. Then Aunt Mary messaged and asked if he would like to go to a Broncos game. What?! Are you kidding?! Would AJ like to go to a Broncos game?! Best.night.of.his.life! It was a good game too. Even this non-sports mama was on the edge of the couch biting her nails the whole game. And AJ got to experience the stadium explode when they won the game.

One of my favorite gifts this Christmas right here...

But has it really been 30 years?!

Celebrating New Years with good friends followed by a game night was a great way to ring in 2016.

Abby has been begging me to teach her how to sew. I was reluctant...worried she wouldn't 'to be focused enough & it would be rough. After she begged for a whole day straight I finally caved.

She did an amazing job. She listened, was detailed oriented, and was a very cautious little seamstress.

She worked hard on her project...

And was super excited to wear the skirt she made to school! She said, "When people ask where I got it I will say it is one of a kind...you won't find it in a store because I made it!"

 

Sunday, December 20, 2015

The Annual Tree Cutting

Every year we bundle up, drive up to the mountains, hunt for the perfect tree, cut it down, and haul it home. Last year our tree was so big it barely fit in our tree stand and fell over at one point resulting in a tree rescue by neighbors and being tied to the wall. This year I vowed to rein Andy in and get a smaller tree.

The kids love this tradition...tree ninjas.

I'm getting used to it...

Abby said, "I found our tree!"

Right. You are your father's daughter.

They got to visit Santa in the visiting center. Awesome! Check that one off the list!

And here is our tree!
Andy is disappointed in the size, but I love her!
She's very Country Living instead of Clark Griswold.

Not pictured: Our pine cone fight where I nailed Andy in face and cut his nose. He didn't even attempt to dodge it because he said my aim is so bad. Well I showed him didn't I.

 

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

December Catch Up

The kids each have their own Christmas tree in their rooms to decorate. They get super excited to go through their ornaments each year. It's a fun time. Abby's ornaments are very pink & sparkly.

Brody has a lot of dinosaur, air plane & tractor ornaments.
AJ has a reason or sentimental value for all his ornaments.

Andy basically becomes Clark Griswold when December hits...so this is a movie night fave after the kids go to bed.

Frisbee's wardrobe cracks me up. Santa's BFF. Ha!

Abby & Brody were super good helpers putting up lights this year.

I thought those candy canes would be soooo fun lining our driveway. Now I curse them as I try to avoid hitting them when I back out every.single.time.

We have been doing a lot of festive puzzles lately. They look so innocent with pictures of snowmen and Santa. But don't be fooled. Those suckers are harder than you think they will be.

I tried to do a photo challenge on Instagram. I lasted two days. This was #stylemedecember Deck your neck. Most days I just wear comfy sweatshirts and pants that have an elastic waist. Two days people. Mama ain't got time for fashion.

My happy little work space with some of my favorite things...coffee in a festive mug, a fun coaster from a friend, post-it's, a felt tip marker (all teachers & ex-teachers fave), yummy lotion, & glittery lip gloss...helps me get through those emails!

Abby has been asking to read to us at night instead of us just read to her. This makes my heart so happy. Reading is not coming easy for this one, but she is a trooper & just rolls with the punches. If I could just package up the world & give it to her I would.

Brody wanted to read me a story since Abby did. He did a pretty good re-tell. It is pretty stinkin' cute how he looks up to his big sister. And how she goes out of her way to care for him. Those two have a strong bond.

Oh.my.goodness. The joy that finding that little elf brings to these kids is the best. Brody just about bursts every morning when runs in to report to me what Frisbee is up to that day. And he still loves Frisbee even though he gets pissed at him & calls him a Tattle Tell if he gets a naughty report. Which I find hilarious.

The pitter patter of his little feet running down stairs and his crinkle nose smile & giggle is soooo worth remembering to move that thing every night.

Here was my second & last attempt at the #stylemedecember challenge. Pear tree green. And a little photo bomber.

Sending Christmas cards is my favorite every year! Eek! Fun return address labels, glitter tape, red & green felt tip markers! Be still my stationary loving heart!

Starting this boy's love for puzzles early. We do this United States puzzle at least 12 times a week.

I am not sure what my family thought St. Nick was going yo bring them with that many shoes...

But this is what they got...

Brody is pretty obsessed with the Veggie Tales St. Nick movie...we watch it a lot. But I'm cool with that.

Here's another Santa puzzle...because puzzles are my new jam.

This night Santa, Belle, and a bunny came by to help with my puzzle efforts...
These things. I eat these things by the bag...
Brody said, "Are you going to eat those all day?"
I said, "Yup."

I redid the song books for the hayride...and made sure I Want A Hippopatamus For Christmas was on there because it's one if the best Christmas songs of all-time.

Spent part of an afternoon making peanut butter balls & having a mama therapy session one day. Husbands should be so thankful for those mama days...because they keep us sane.

We co-hosted the second annual neighborhood hayride. It snowed and was so festive. It was a blast.

Andy got to wear his cowboy hat & cowboy boots and drive a tractor...

The kids got to play in the snow, run around with friends, eat lots of cookies/brownies/candy canes, drink hot cocoa, ride on a trailer with flashlights singing songs from Home Alone, & sled down the middle of the street...best night ever in their little world.

Last minute gift for my AHG girls. Love anything with spastic color!

Our unit lead the flag ceremonies at the AHG meeting! So cute!

Frisbee has been up to his usual silliness...

We are all caught up on our Jesse tree! And to my amazement the kids are telling us the stories that go with each of the ornaments this year. So awesome! I love this tradition.

This month is flying by, and we are trying to take it all in...here's to a calm next ten days!